Hymn # 724 Come, every Soul by Sin Oppressed
Words of Assurance: 1 John 2:1-2 (ESV)
My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
Hymn # 726 Some Day the Silver Cord Will Break
God's Will for Our Lives: Galatians 6:1-10 (ESV)
6:1 Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. 2 Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor. 5 For each will have to bear his own load.
6 One who is taught the word must share all good things with the one who teaches. 7 Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. 8 For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. 9 And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. 10 So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.
Scripture: Romans 5:1-5 (ESV)
5 Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
Sermon: Great Assurance
Intro: a frequent occurance is people to say they trust in Christ. But they don't live lives that really shows evidence of change in them. Like trusting in Jesus has really evidenced change in them.
They need to know that it is indeed Christ who has made those changes in them.
These aren't people actively living a life opposed to God, but more people who aren't truly resting in God's goodness toward us.
We need to know that we van rest in the action that Jesus Christ did on our behalf. It is not an earning, it is a truzting,. This will have declare us just.
So now we reach today's passage.
We have been justified by faith.
So we have peace with Christ.
If one trusts in Christ, we have been justified. THEREFORE .... all these things coming next are true.
It all hinges on our trust in Christ.
1. We have peace with God. This is not where we started out. We started out as enemies of God. But now we trust him, so peace has come to us, friends of God. A true and lasting peace. From this peace with God we now have access to God's grace.
2. God's grace ... undeserved goodness from God. We didn't earn it nor deserve it, but it is granted to us. We can stand in this grace. (Gives me a picture of standing guarded within God's hands ....standing strong while buffeted by winds but simply standing). This grace has us looking constantly to the one that has continually provided for us.
Sometimes Christians think that God is against them because difficult things have happened to them. They fail to see how God's grace has continued in their lives.
The word hope as used in the bible is a hope that is certain...called hope because it hasn't happened yet. Our hope is not yet received but it is still coming. This is a certainty.
Hope in the glory of God. That is the actual biblical wording. A biblical truth.
So what does this really mean?
Seeing God is the best thing ever. Blessings in the OT always talk about God's face being turned toward the blessee. "His face turned toward you". But seeing God's face .. the glory would kill you (as the frai. People that we are when living in this sin-filled world) ...we can only now see part of God's glory. One day I will see God face to face. Frail human that I be, will someday see God as he truly is. Face to face. This is my hope.
When we see him face to face we will be transformed from the weak, sin-filled people that we are currently. We will be made like him, rather than just striving to be like him.
3. Rejoice in our sufferings. Not rejoice despite our sufferings....but rejoice IN our suffering. Because suffering produces something in us. Endurance - to stand up under pressure. Character - proven, tested. Hope - it is increased and strengthened. And we are not disappointed.
Suffering has purpose in our lives. There is always a reason. It means that we can rejoice in our suffering as it shows that God is working in our lives.
God has given us grace that we can stand in everyday. And so we can rejoice.
We can know through this that God is at work in our lives evidencing change for his glory. This is our reminder and our hope..so that we can glorify God all the more.
Hymn # 120 O Christ, our Hope, our Heart's Desire
Hymn # 683 Praise Him, Praise Him
Hymn # Gloria Patri